Six years of acrimony dogged the first attempt of the Neighborhood Church in Palos Verdes Estates to build a social hall on its bluff-top property at Malaga Cove. But a new proposal created barely a ripple before the Planning Commission last week because the church and its neighbors on Paseo del Mar worked together on the new concept, which calls for the demolition and replacement of part of an existing structure.
"We have no objection to the building," said Benjamin E. Kuchar, who lives directly across from the church and is president of the Malaga Cove Homeowners Assn. The group fought earlier church plans for a 4,150-square-foot building, and the city turned down the proposal last April.
Kuchar said the situation changed when the church decided to demolish and rebuild a former garage--adding only 1,700 square feet of space--to create a 3,700-square-foot hall for activities now housed in a multipurpose room. The church does not plan to expand its activities, according to the application the church filed for a conditional use permit.
Despite agreeing about the building, the two sides are still in dispute over how many weddings the church can hold without disrupting the neighborhood.